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'95 Legacy L losing power accelerating

legacy power loss accelerating rpms

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6 replies to this topic

#1 Gargoyles

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 02:04 PM

The title is a little misleading, but I don't know a good way to describe it. I'll start with some background. 148k miles, just had a timing kit done on the car. Replaced the engine coolant temperature sensor after reading that this possibly was the cause for my rough idle and the engine cranking, but not catching when warm starting. By the way, this has totally solved my problem (fingers crossed).. this forum is awesome and thank you to all those that contribute... saved me a bunch of money on that fix..

 

But now, I'm just noticing (I don't know if it is because before I replaced the ECTS my engine was always running rough, or because I knocked something loose in the process, or what) when I'm accelerating, it doesn't accelerate smoothly. It seems to get through the first gear normally, then when accelerating through the next gear I can feel (and see the tachometer) the car kind of oscillate between accelerating at a predictable rate then slowing down (but still accelerating) then back up, and down again, etc. When watching the tachometer it will rise, then stop, then rise, then stop, etc. 

 

I don't know if this is making any sense, but I don't know how else to describe it. Any thoughts on what this could be, what to check, fix, replace, etc.?

 

Also, when flushing my coolant and replacing the hoses, I noticed a small leak right next to (below) the air vent plug on the radiator. It is right where the upper hose connects to the radiator where that horizontal plane meets the vertical plane. Again I'm sorry if I'm not describing things in conventional ways... I'm not really mechanical at all, I'm just trying to be these days to save money. Anyway, do I need to replace the whole radiator because of this, or is it safe to use come kind of leak stop... if so, what recommendations for leak stop. I needed, I could provide pictures when I get home.

 

Thanks for any and all help.

 

I did do some searching for these things, but didn't find what I needed. I'm sorry if this stuff has been discussed already, just let me know and I can do more searching.



#2 Fairtax4me

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 02:48 PM

What year engine and trans?

Doesn't sound like a typical issue, but there are some things you could try. If it hasn't had spark plugs and wires recently that's always a good place to start. Check around for any vacuum leaks, check all of the hoses for cracks splits and loose fitting.


A radiator for these cars is usually less than $100. Stop leak just clogs up the rest of the system and may not actually fix the leak. Make sure its not just the hose leaking. (Clamp loose)

#3 Gargoyles

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Posted 01 October 2013 - 04:23 PM

What year engine and trans?

Doesn't sound like a typical issue, but there are some things you could try. If it hasn't had spark plugs and wires recently that's always a good place to start. Check around for any vacuum leaks, check all of the hoses for cracks splits and loose fitting.


A radiator for these cars is usually less than $100. Stop leak just clogs up the rest of the system and may not actually fix the leak. Make sure its not just the hose leaking. (Clamp loose)

Thank you, I appreciate the quick response and ideas. As far as I know it is an ej22, AT. I'm kind of guessing a leak somewhere too, I read somewhere that one way to check for vacuum leaks is by spraying carb cleaner on the connections.. If there is a leak the RPMs will change. Is that true?



#4 Fairtax4me

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 12:32 AM

Carb cleaner works but I dont like it because it usually leaves an oily residue behind which can damage the rubber hoses, and it doesn't dry quickly so its kind of a fire hazard.
I use Throttle body cleaner even though it costs a bit more. It dries almost instantly, doesn't hurt the hoses, and leaves no residue. If you find a leak engine rpm will drop, If its a big enough leak it may even stall.
Then when you get done looking for vacuum leaks you can use the TB cleaner to spray out the TB and IAC.

#5 heartless

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 06:32 AM

coolant leak - first verify that the problem is not the hose being loose and/or old and damaged. You said you had timing done - did the water pump get replaced at the same time? - if so, it is possible there are loose hoses

 

if it is the actual radiator leaking, best to just replace the radiator - dont use stop leak additives - they tend to cause more problems than they solve.

 

hesitation - several possible factors...

loose/cracked vacuum lines, old/worn spark plugs, bad plug wires, knock sensor acting up, O2 sensor starting to go...

 

If you have a CEL (verify it works when you first turn the key on - should light up momentarily), get the codes read - OBDII: most chain parts stores will read them for you for free. We will need the actual code - if there is one.

 

If no codes: I would start by checking vacuum lines - old, hard lines can crack easily, and/or dont seal very well. Pay special attention to the small ones behind/under the passenger side intake runner and the bigger line going to the PCV (might want to check that while you are at it). I will second the Throttle body cleaner for the spray testing. You want to use something that will dry/evaporate quickly, and leave no harmful residue.

 

Make sure the air intake hoses are in good condition - no cracks or splits - especially at connection points - and that they are fully seated (air filter condition?).

 

next up would be plugs and wires - plain old ordinary NGK plugs (the cheapest ones), properly gapped, and a good quality set of wires - I like the NGK wires as well.

 

Knock sensor will usually throw a code fairly quickly when it goes, but not always. These can be found on ebay pretty cheaply - around $20, give or take - and are pretty easy to replace.

 

O2 sensor - may/may not throw a code until it is completely gone - on my car, I didnt get an O2 code until the car was pretty much undriveable - would be ok when cold (O2 signal not in use), but would buck, stutter, & generally run like crap once it warmed up (O2 signal used).

 

One other possibility - partially clogged fuel filter - engine isnt getting enough fuel under load...



#6 MilesFox

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 09:15 AM

If this problem came after changin the ECTS, i would guess the following:

knocking loose the vacuum line from the manifold to the fuel pressure regulator

loose vacuum from the purge control solenoid (there is a tee from the solenoid, to intake, to pressure solenoid on the strut tower)

wiggled the main harness plug or o2 sensor plug

the pcv hose from the pcv valve to crank vent to intake tube is loose

IACV hose came loose on either end.

 

These are guesses fresh off my memory as i have just been in and out of a whole ej22 intake trying to figure out a misfire



#7 Gargoyles

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Posted 02 October 2013 - 11:17 AM

These are awesome suggestions, thank you! I'll report back when I'm able to go through some of these checks.







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